• Keeping Things Going.... Sightings 21st Feb

    Hello there, long time and all that! I offered to blog today given that Andrew is away.

    So without further ado, here is the sightings picture from today. 

    For me today, my highlights were through my macro lens - butterflies, bees, shieldbugs and ladybirds. 

    This small tortoiseshell was feeding on blossom near to the VC. A delight to see :) 

    I saw another small tortoiseshell near the path on the reedbed trail. A brimstone…

    • 21 Feb 2019
  • Springish - Sightings, 17 Feb

    Cautious folk reading this may well take a sharp intake of breath, but the Dearne Valley today felt decidedly Springish! Coats were left on the back seats and visitors to Old Moor enjoyed both the birdsong and this range of sightings…

    First stop for many was the Tree Sparrow Farm where the number of reed bunting today surprised most visitors. Among them were at least one yellowhammer and a female brambling. There…

    • 17 Feb 2019
  • Strollin’ - Sightings, 14 Feb

    This time last year, most of Old Moor’s water birds were standing on ice; today felt far more like summer! Here’s today’s summary of sightings…

    First things first. If you are visiting Old Moor tomorrow you’ll notice that the Reedbed Trail is closed for a second day of maintenance work…

    But worry not, you can still get a view over Reedbed One from the bus stop and one determined…

    • 14 Feb 2019
  • Ever Nearer - Sightings, 12 Feb

    Spring inches nearer and today at Old Moor provided more of those familiar early signs of the new season. More on that in a moment but first the summary of sightings from today…

    First news from the day was that there are now not one, but two places to play ‘spot the brambling’. This late winter pastime at Old Moor usually takes place in the Tree Sparrow Farm but today eagle-eyed watchers picked up…

    • 12 Feb 2019
  • And We’re Off - Sightings, 10 Feb

    ‘Boom’ – and we’re off! Yep, visitors to Old Moor today reported not tentative bittern ‘grunts’ but proper, full-throated booms! But that was just one of the sixty bird species recorded today. More in a moment, but first the summary of sightings…

    And the sightings news from Adwick Washland can be found here and came via Nigel Smith. Thanks Nigel. Accompanying Nigel’s tweet,…

    • 10 Feb 2019
  • Grunting Bittern! - Sightings, 8 Feb

    It may have been blowy out there today, but there were also some early signs that spring is just around the corner.

    Here’s today’s summary of sightings…

    The two brown hare seen at Old Moor today weren’t boxing but it’s only a matter of time.

    We are so used to seeing cormorant around the reserve that it’s easy to forget that as we head towards spring, they look like completely different…

    • 8 Feb 2019
  • Solar Flair + Sightings, 5 Feb

    Evening Folks! A bit of an odd blog this one (-what d'ya mean, they all are?!) in that the first bit is me but, after todays' summary of sightings, I shall hand over to Graham Figg who has news on some developments at Old Moor.

    First up, that all-important summary...

    Hello all,

    It's Graham Figg here, RSPB Dearne Valley Senior Site Manager. I would like to take this time and opportunity to let you know about…

    • 5 Feb 2019
  • More Surprises - Sightings, 3 Feb

    What a crackin’ day! A day of surprises and drama at Old Moor. Details in a moment but first the summary…

    Let’s start in the Tree Sparrow Farm. New here today were a fine-looking pair of yellowhammer and a female brambling. Nearby, in the Bird Garden, a pair of redwing were added to the more familiar mix.

    Whilst the Mere and Wath Ings’ main marsh provided large numbers of wintering ducks, there were…

    • 3 Feb 2019
  • Transformed - Sightings, 31 Jan

    The Dearne Valley was transformed by sharp frosts and temperatures around -5°C today. Nevertheless, there were some very hardy watchers out there to bring us the sightings!

    Here’s today’s summary…

    As you can see above, there were surprisingly good sightings for such a cold day. The barn owl in the Tree Sparrow Farm is particularly notable as is the number of shelduck around the reserve.

    Yet for…

    • 31 Jan 2019
  • Icy Adwick - Sightings, 29 Jan

    Evening Folks! Here’s today’s summary of sightings from Old Moor…

    In the dusty backroom that is Blog HQ, there’s only room for one ancient, metal filing cabinet (the kind that scrapes as you open each drawer). Inside things are organised by date. So, getting ready for tonight’s blog, for example, I can tell you that on 29th January in 2016 there were 14 yellowhammer in the Tree Sparrow…

    • 29 Jan 2019
  • Well Over Halfway – Sightings, 27 Jan

    With January coming to a close, we’ve almost two months of winter under our belts. Well over halfway through now and the earliest spring bulbs are already up. Here’s today’s summary of sightings from Old Moor…

    As you can see, there’s another reason to mark the date. Today provided Old Moor’s first bittern sighting by a visitor. Mary Wilde spotted the bird and noted that it ‘flew by…

    • 27 Jan 2019
  • January WEX - Worms!

    Hello again, it's time once more for our monthly WEX blog from our young enthusiast, Freddie. The group met last Saturday and I'm sure that you have guessed the theme from my title today!

    Over to Freddie who, as per usual, has written a fabulous account of their meeting. 

    This month at WEX we did all about wormeries and how worms help us in our daily lives.

    While we were waiting for everyone to arrive, I completed…

    • 25 Jan 2019
  • Happy 40th BGB! - Sightings, 24 Jan

    What were you doing 40 years ago?

    While you ponder that, here’s today’s summary of sightings from Old Moor…

    Forty years ago, I had not long started Secondary School (Yes, really!!) and very probably watched the episode of BBC’s Blue Peter when Lesley Judd, Simon Groom and Christopher Wenner asked viewers to take part in the very first Big Garden Birdwatch.

    The idea was brilliantly simple. Volunteer…

    • 24 Jan 2019
  • Nippy - Sightings, 22 Jan

    Evening Folks! Here’s today’s summary…

    • 22 Jan 2019
  • Whoopers and Friend - Sightings, 20 Jan

    Old Moor welcomed twenty-eight members of North Staffordshire RSPB group today and by all accounts they chose a crackin’ day to visit!

    Here’s the summary of birds seen…

    One of the more unusual sightings of day was the arrival of twenty-six whooper swans that had chosen to rest themselves on Wath Ings. What’s more, they’d brought a friend – a black swan, a bird that breeds in the southern…

    • 20 Jan 2019
  • Brilliance - Sightings, 17 Jan.

    It may have been cold in the Dearne Valley this morning but what the low winter sun lacked in warmth, it made up for in brilliance.

    Here’s the summary of sightings from today…

    It was good to see the Tree Sparrow Farm full of birds this morning. Partly this was because of that nearby field of teasels which was attracting a flock of thirty or so goldfinch. A smaller flock of long-tailed tits also provided…

    • 17 Jan 2019
  • Redpolls and Red - Sightings, 15 Jan.

    Just a quick blog tonight, though today's sightings show a terrific mix of birds, especially for January!

    It was good to see the mealy redpoll and fifteen 'lessers' were back at Old Moor again and also great to see 'Red' (ringed peregrine 'PAA') gracing the reserve with her presence. Mind you, I doubt other birds felt the same!

    Here's the summary...

    • 15 Jan 2019
  • On Display – Sightings, 13 Jan

    Bright but with blustery, reed-flattening winds out there today! Here’s the summary…

    At Edderthorpe today, John Clarkson reported: thirteen shelduck, 113 shoveler, three male pintail, a male goldeneye and a buzzard among other birds. Thanks John.

    Paul Dennis added peregrine to that list at Edderthorpe – and subtracted one from the total of lapwing seen! Thanks Paul.

    A pair of very handsome common…

    • 13 Jan 2019
  • 2018 Catch Up... Reserve team blog – January ‘19

    I thought it was about time that I got down to writing about what we’ve been up to as it’s been a while since I wrote the last one!

    New Signs.

    I’m sure you will have noticed the updated signs on the roadside outside the reserve. Very smart and colourful!

    … and also the new information signs at Adwick.

    These were put up last July, so you should have noticed by now!

     

    Scrub Clearance.

    The lush…

    • 12 Jan 2019
  • 'Pale Plover'? - Sightings, 10 Jan

    Plenty of flopwing around Old Moor today… No? How about ‘peewit’? ‘Green plover’? – Oh alright, ‘lapwing’ if you must. And among them one that caught everyone’s eye. But first the summary….

    John Seeviour’s report from Bolton Ings today included: two mute swan, sixteen mallard, four gadwall, four tufted duck, six pochard, two male goldeneye, ten goosander…

    • 10 Jan 2019
  • Taken As Red - Sightings, 8 Jan

    Tapping the glass on the Old Moor ‘Species-o-meter’ this evening produced a reading of 48 bird species and one terrific mammal! Here’s the summary…

    Once again, bearded tits were seen (and heard) around the Reedbed Trail along with two marsh harriers, a Cetti’s warbler and - well, the peregrine was taken as ‘Red’.

    The peregrine in question from Paul Peters via our Facebook Page…

    • 8 Jan 2019
  • Over to You - Sightings, 6 Jan

    Brilliant, blue skies meant today felt more like early spring and less like midwinter. Here’s the summary of birds seen during the day…

    The Reedbed Trail was definitely one of the reserve ‘hotspots’ today and if you were lucky, there were five great birds to see over and above the supporting cast of wildfowl and reed buntings.

    It was here that most visitors saw our semi-resident peregrine – left…

    • 6 Jan 2019
  • Appealing - Sightings, 3 Jan

    Regular visitors to Old Moor know that, as the season changes, so does the ‘mix’ of birds seen. Although I didn’t see all of them myself, today for example I reckon there were around 45 species of bird seen on the reserve. Here’s the summary…

    But there is one small bird that I haven’t recorded on the sightings for some months now and I admit I’m getting a bit worried. So my question to…

    • 3 Jan 2019
  • In a Nutshell - Sightings, 30 Dec

    Back from my Christmas break (very nice, thanks for asking) and ready to see out the year! In a moment, a look back at some of the highlights of 2018 and another remarkable year of sightings in the Dearne Valley.

    But before all that, here’s the summary of birds seen today at Old Moor…

    I’m bound to miss something from the year, but that’s because – wonderfully - there is so much to remember. – And, before…

    • 30 Dec 2018
  • To Roost - Sightings, 20 Dec.

    Sadly those beardies were elusive today, though fellow volunteer and all-round good egg Rob Robinson did spot a male bird near the Reedbed Screen this morning.

    Here’s a summary of the birds seen at Old Moor today…

    Seen briefly today were three goosander heading from Bolton Ings towards the river; a lesser redpoll that seemed not to have stopped on the reserve; and – just up the road, at Wombwell I…

    • 20 Dec 2018